Nataša Lalović Marić (Partner, Wolf Theiss Belgrade), Christian Mikosch (Partner, Wolf Theiss Vienna) and János Tóth (Partner, Wolf Theiss Budapest) accepted the award on behalf of Wolf Theiss.
The decision was based not only on the firm’s generally strong performance in M&A throughout CEE in 2016 – Wolf Theiss has attained top MergerMarket rankings in several countries in CEE, including Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, and Slovenia (see these two press releases) – but also on a series of prominent deals.
MergerMarket specifically cited the firm’s advice to Rockaway Capital on its acquisition of 100% of the shares in INVIA. INVIA is the largest Czech online travel agency and one of the most popular providers of online travel packages in CEE. The deal was led by Jan Myška (Partner, Wolf Theiss Prague), and further involved the firm’s Bratislava, Bucharest, Budapest and Warsaw offices. The Polish component of the deal was particularly complex, as INVIA held a stake in Travelplanet, a stock-exchange listed Polish company. The deal had to be structured as a private transaction in the Czech Republic and as a parallel public takeover offer in Poland subject to the mandatory buyout rules under Polish capital markets regulations. The Warsaw team, led by Dariusz Harbaty, advised on the squeeze-out of minority shareholders of Travelplanet.pl and on the delisting of its shares from the Warsaw Stock Exchange and, in the process, dealt with the Polish Financial Supervision Authority, the Warsaw Stock Exchange and the National Depository of Securities. According to independent reports, this was the largest deal in CEE according to volume in the first half of 2016.
Horst Ebhardt (Partner and Head, Corporate/M&A) commented, "We are extremely proud of our success. This recognition shows the overall strength of our regional practice plus the individual strength of our teams in each of our CEE offices. Congratulations also to Jan and Dariusz for the recognition of their hard work in this stand-out transaction; their efforts played a strong role in Wolf Theiss receiving this prestigious award.